The internet is awash with information on making black scrying mirrors, which in truth are not difficult to make and easier to buy.
For those who can’t be bothered to make one, and frankly for many of us life is too short for DIY, just buy an obsidian mirror for your scrying fun from amazon. It will cost you the same as a couple of coffees/glasses of wine, or half a gin and tonic in a posh London bar.
But the question of making a black scrying mirror reared its ugly head, when one of V.'s regular clients pitched up at the office, and after the usual exchange of pleasantries sat down.
Now in the usual course of events I exchange idle chit chat with V.s clients as they wait for her, and they always wait or are kept waiting. Witches eh? Not good with time keeping.
We chew the fat about weather, politics, banking, problems on the tubes and so on and so forth.
But we never, ever, not even once talk about why they are visiting V. or anything other than the mundane.
There are two reasons for this.
Reason number one. Her clients are doctors, lawyers, merchants, and chiefs (she is expensive). Respectable people, the great and good, occasional vicars and men of science and learning by and large don’t like to admit that they are regularly consulting a witch.
Reason number two. I (currently) know nothing about fortune telling, magic, witchery of any kind and confine myself to pleasantries.
I have started scrying regularly. If you have read about my my scrying trauma you will now that following V.’s advice have stopped using a shaving mirror and now use black obsidian. I was having issues with the images I was seeing, which is due to my lack of experience. An obsidian mirror is dull, meaning that reflections can be seen but lacking in detail.
This makes it more difficult for 'so called' mischievous spirits to cloud the weak and untrained mind (thanks to V. for that massive ego boost), change what is seen in the minds eye and project what is often rather unpleasant imagery onto the surface.
And so, when one of the regulars looked above the mantel saw our mirror, and started talking about scrying (while waiting for a consultation with V), our conversation naturally gravitated in that direction.
But I have jumped ahead of myself. Let me tell you about the office.
The office where I work (although it no longer really feels like work) is not like your normal open plan office. There is no photo copier, water cooler, break out areas, serious looking types in crisp suits talking loudly and forcefully into phones and laughing too loudly for no reason. There are no schedules, meetings (other than in the Black Cat) and soul destroying nonsense that makes you question your immortal soul and very existence.
It is more akin to how I imagine an 18th century drawing room would have appeared, although considerably more comfortable and with newfangled (snigger) appliances (mac etc). The walls are lined with books, of which the majority are not in English or in any language that either I or google translate recognise . Some are in Latin. These are for show and are in the main 17th almanacs from centuries past.
There is a coal fire when necessary, which in these gods forsaken times (blame global warming) is from October to April.
The hearthstone is slate, heavy, matt black with sigils in a pyramid with the apex facing the hearth. I have tried and failed to decipher these. It looks good, atmospheric even and by the hearth are several ornate chippendales. These are good to look at, and not so good for sitting on.
The mantel above the fireplace has a large and beautiful obsidian mirror. Again there are sigils, but this time twisted in a double helix around the outside (scientific description) or a snake eating itself (Malintzinm’s description) and a matt so dark that it appears to absorb light.
You could not buy this on amazon or e-bay.
There used to be a more traditional mirror. Large gold frame. V. replaced this for me after hearing about my scrying difficulties, christened it and carved the sigils. Thanks V. X
Returning to the client, and I can tell you that he was a judge without breaching any confidentiality (as I said the great and good), I noticed that he was staring intently at the mirror.
“Nice mirror” he observed (not very eloquent for a member of the judiciary) and running his index finger over the engraved sigils and studying them thoughtfully.
“Obsidian black. Super quality finish.” he continued
“One wouldn’t be able to buy this on e-bay. What!”.
The Judge has a plummy accent, as befits his profession as we don’t want the law to sound too common do we now? We need gravitas and pomp.
But I have an ear for these things, and one hundred to one his accent is fake, or not truely his own. I don’t know whether he has taken elocution lessons but there is something off with the vowels and a hint of a less grandiose past.
But then we all have to wear camouflage to make our way through life, so why should he be any different and who am I to criticise given my past?
“Do you scry yourself young man?”
Normally I would answer have muttered some noncommittal and negative answer to this question. But today slightly unsettled from my recent brush with the legal system (now over thankfully and a story for another day), and issues with mirrors in general, I was in a weakened state.
I answered truthfully:
“A little. Well quite lot and I use a small obsidian mirror myself. Black. Keeps the beasts at bay.”
I was babbling a little, sounding a little like the Judge himself scrying experiences having set me on edge.
Pathetic on the face of it, but once you've faced the prospect of jail time (unfairly), you have a different perspectice on things. I'll tell you about it some day.
The Judge appeared not to have heard me, having moved closer to the mirror to examine the sigils in more detail.
“And do you know how one would go about crafting a black obsidian scrying mirror like this? Or perhaps to ask the question more precisely how one would decide on the sigils on the surround?”
“I don’t recognise the design”
And after a pause:
“And ahem if you don’t mind me asking, what is it that you see when you focus?”
I told him.
And also why obsidian black mirrors were better in some situations (like mine) than either water or glass.
He listened (without interruption) all the while examining our mirror, rapt and intense.
And finally (pompous again):
"I'm sure that I could persuade Vivienne to sell this mirror to me."
I was feeling more and more like Gollum in Lord of the Rings as Bilbo steals his precious ring, when V. (fashionably late as usual) emerged from her consultation room (decorated with seriously gothic witchy chic).
She beckoned Mr X to follow her into her sanctum saying to him:-
"Think upon the snowy vastness of the icy steppes of my home country, filled with bears, wolves who burn souls, ancient and nameless beings and meditate on the chances of you surving a night, isolated, alone and lost and without friends."
"And then think again about trying to buy our obsidian mirror."
And to my surprise, V. turned and winked at me mouthing the words
"It's never going anywhere."